Kathryn Plaisance, recipient of the Distinguished Teacher Award, 2016

Knowledge Integration

Picture of Kathryn Plaisance.Plaisance, who has been at UWaterloo since 2009, has been a valuable foundational member of the Knowledge Integration program, and has had a transformative impact on her colleagues. Along with many presentations to peers about her teaching practices, Plaisance created a workshop with her students to help other faculty members implement collaborative strategies into their teaching. Many faculty members who attended remarked that the experience would change the way they taught in their own classrooms (she and her students have been asked to run a second such workshop in April). Plaisance is known for being approachable to students and makes herself available to meet outside of class to discuss matters that are affecting them – both personally and academically. One undergraduate student commented that “Katie has the ability to challenge her students while simultaneously building academic confidence. Every student that takes a class with Katie grows as a writer, philosopher, learner, and listener.” To quote one of Plaisance’s colleagues, “Her pedagogy is rigorous and exciting at the same time. She is rapidly emerging as one of UWaterloo’s leading exemplars in teaching.”